by Rita & Serena
(Perth, Western Australia )
Hello. I have two four year old female budgies, Maxi and Molly.
Maxi has laid about 10 eggs in total this season within 2-3 clutches (which are unfertilised as we don't have a male budgie). The first time she laid eggs was last year.
We have had to remove the eggs in the first 2 clutches because, after sitting on them for a couple of weeks, she cracked them open with her beak.
A couple of days ago, in the morning, the screeching of our birds woke us up. We went to go see what was going on and Molly (who has never laid eggs in her life so far) was at the bottom of the cage where Maxi was keeping her unfertilised eggs warm. They were fighting like we have never seen before. It was quite bad.
Molly was trying to get to Maxi's eggs, which she managed to, and cracked two of open. We separated them immediately into the spare cage and managed to save the 3 uncracked eggs (as we were taking the eggs away from Molly, she grabbed onto my wrist with her beak and wouldn't let go). We kept the eggs from both of them.
We put them in the same cage later during that day and they were fine and back to normal. Maxi was really happy, chirping and being her usual crazy self (which we haven't seen for a while because she has been spending so much time on her eggs)! But then we reconsidered taking the eggs away from her that day, so we put them back into the cage for Maxi to sit on them, as every now and then she would go to the the corner of the cage where they were before we took them away from her, and we put Molly into the spare cage so that she wouldn't crack Maxi's eggs open again.
We have had them separated for a few days now so that Maxi can sit on her eggs in peace. Although, we are quite concerned about it because she has been sitting on them for longer than usual. Usually she will sit on her clutch of eggs for no more than 3 weeks before she will lose interest and crack them open herself, but she has been sitting on the now for almost a month.
Is this normal for a budgie to be sitting on her unfertilised eggs for this long? What is the usual/normal amount of time they would sit on their clutch of eggs for? And should we take the eggs away from her anytime soon?
Her droppings are huge! We were thinking it might be because she isn't eating as much as usual because she is too busy sitting on her eggs, and her food is just passing straight through her. Could that just be the reason? Is it normal?? We don't think she has egg binding because she isn't showing the symptoms for it such as swelling around the vent or anything. She still goes for an occasional snack on her seeds, fruit and veges and for a sip of water). She still goes to the top of the cage on the perch a couple of times each day (not for very long though, just a couple of minutes) and is cleaning herself, although she isn't chirping as much as usual.
We are worried about the amount of time she is sitting on her eggs for and the size of her droppings.
Rita & Serena